Acton Institute

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The mission of the Acton Institute is to promote a free, virtuous, and humane society. This direction recognizes the benefits of a limited government, but also the beneficent consequences of a free market. It embraces an objective framework of moral values, but also recognizes and appreciates the subjective nature of economic value. It views justice as a duty of all to give the one his due but, more importantly, as an individual obligation to serve the common good and not just his own needs and wants. In order to promote a more profound understanding of the coming together of faith and liberty, the Institute involves members of religious, business, and academic spheres in its various seminars, publications, and academic activities. It is our hope that by demonstrating the compatibility of faith, liberty, and free economic activity, religious leaders and entrepreneurs can contribute by helping to shape a society that is secure, free, and virtuous.

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Lord Acton's famous quote: "Absolute power corrupts absolutely"
The Star Trek crew recognizes the wisdom in Lord Acton's insight from 1887: "Power tends to corrupt, and absolute power corrupts absolutely. Great men are almost always bad men."

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Inhabiting the Land
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 18,000. Language: English. Published: May 23, 2012 by Acton Institute. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Christian Education / Adult
John Paul II asserts the right to migrate and this monograph presents a defense for this case. But the meaning of right employed in this defense is wholly distinct from that employed in the contemporary rights language of public policy debates. Rather, the meaning of right in Catholic natural law tradition is analogous to the right to property, and not to the right to life.
The Good That Business Does
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 27,050. Language: English. Published: March 25, 2012 by Acton Institute. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Christian Education / Adult
One of the major political challenges of the modern era has been to manage the integration of business into the life of the civil community. Similarly, Christian social thinkers have struggled to integrate business activity into their account of morality, justice, and the common good.
Foundations of a Free & Virtuous Society
Price: $9.99 USD. Words: 50,950. Language: English. Published: May 28, 2017 by Acton Institute. Categories: Nonfiction » Philosophy » Social
Creative, quirky, and always winsome, Dylan Pahman builds a systematic case for a positive relationship between a biblical understanding of the human person and the economic flourishing that freedom enables. His tour of scripture, philosophy, and economics mirrors the curriculum of the Acton Institute’s highly successful conferences. Free-market advocates will discover a sound theological...
Fair Trade? Its Prospects as a Poverty Solution
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 20,570. Language: English. Published: January 31, 2012 by Acton Institute. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Ethics
Fair Trade is an enormously popular idea in Christian and secular circles alike. Who, after all, could be against fairness? Victor V. Claar, however, raises significant economic and moral questions about both the logic and economic reasoning underlying the fair trade movement.
A Theory of Corruption
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 15,450. Language: English. Published: March 12, 2012 by Acton Institute. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Christian Education / Adult
There is no greater scourge that affects the proper functioning of any economic system than corruption. Tragically, corruption is pervasive in developing nations. It is found often on the part of public officials who delay the issuance or processing of public documents unless a monetary inducement is offered.
Judaism, Markets, and Capitalism: Separating Myth from Reality
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 8,280. Language: English. Published: May 4, 2012 by Acton Institute. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Judaism
Corinne and Robert Sauer, co-founders of the Jerusalem Institute for Market Studies, contend that "it is not at all true that Judaism is a set of principles that endorses income redistribution and other progressive social programs." Instead, they say, Judaism is a system of thought that more naturally aligns itself with the basic principles of economic liberalism.
Beyond Distributism
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 23,380. Language: English. Published: May 11, 2012 by Acton Institute. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Christian Education / Adult
Troubled by rampant injustice and inequality, many conscientious Christians advocate radical economic reforms. Distributism, a program that traces its popularity to Catholic writers Hilaire Belloc and G.K. Chesterton, promotes the widespread ownership of property by tempering the market with guilds or similar associations.
Toward A Free And Virtuous Society
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 5,500. Language: English. Published: July 14, 2012 by Acton Institute. Categories: Nonfiction » Philosophy » Ethics & moral philosophy
Occasional Paper No. 9. With an Introduction by Doug Bandow. A foundational description of the complementary relationship of freedom and morality. "Both freedom and virtue are under serious assault today...At this critical time, some supporters of either liberty or virtue are setting the two against each other, treating them as frequent antagonists, if not permanent opponents.
A Field Guide for the Hero’s Journey
Price: $6.99 USD. Words: 34,960. Language: English. Published: November 16, 2012 by Acton Institute. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Christian Life / Inspirational
Do you feel like something big is missing from your life? Do you feel trapped, bored, stuck in a meaningless routine? It may be you think you're too ordinary to ever do something special. Perhaps you're afraid that if you try, you'll fail. The startling truth is this: Just about anyone can do great things, can live a life that's remarkable, purposeful, excellent, and yes, even heroic.
Islamic Theology, Constitutionalism, and the State
Price: $7.99 USD. Words: 69,620. Language: English. Published: December 25, 2012 by Acton Institute. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Islam / Theology
One of the most critical questions facing the world today is whether Islam is capable of accommodating itself to the constitutional forms of government that first arose in the West. Needless to say, opinion is sharply divided on this question.
Creation and the Heart of Man: An Orthodox Christian Perspective on Environmentalism
Price: $2.99 USD. Words: 26,280. Language: English. Published: November 3, 2013 by Acton Institute. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Christianity / Orthodox
Rooted in the Tradition of the Orthodox Church and its teaching on the relationship between God, humanity, and all creation, Fr. Michael Butler and Prof. Andrew Morriss offer a new contribution to Orthodox environmental theology. Too often policy recommendations from theologians and Church authorities have taken the form of pontifications, obscuring many important economic and public policy...


One and Indivisible: The Relationship between Religious and Economic Freedom
Price: $9.95 USD. Words: 61,480. Language: English. Published: June 11, 2016. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Religion and politics
In the twenty-first century, increasing persecution of religious believers across the world has brought renewed attention to the importance and foundations of genuine religious liberty. Too often, however, advocates of religious freedom fail to recognize the ways in which other aspects of freedom—including the rights to property and economic initiative—are intertwined with the freedom to act...
Theologian & Philosopher of Liberty: Essays of Evaluation & Criticism in Honor of Michael Novak
Price: $9.99 USD. Words: 100,430. Language: English. Published: February 5, 2014. Categories: Essay » Author profile
Throughout his long and rich career as a theologian and philosopher, Michael Novak has written on a formidable number of subjects. Though most well- known for his contributions to the conversation between theology and economics, Novak has also written on topics such as the ethics of nuclear deterrence, the Second Vatican Council, the welfare state, liberation theology, concepts of subjectivity...
Religion & Liberty - Volume 20, Number 3/4
Price: Free! Words: 15,850. Language: English. Published: December 15, 2010. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Religion and politics
Religion & Liberty’s issue featuring an interview with ACT 3 Founder John H. Armstrong is now available. This double issue is a tribute to the 20th anniversary of Acton’s founding.
Religion & Liberty - Volume 20, Number 2
Price: Free! Words: 10,350. Language: English. Published: October 21, 2010. Categories: Nonfiction » Religion and Spirituality » Religion and politics
Religion & Liberty’s issue featuring an interview with Alexander Solzhenitsyn scholar Edward E. Ericson Jr. is now available online. Acton also published Solzhenitsyn & the Modern World by Ericson in 1994.

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